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Encyclopedia > Tom Ridge
Tom Ridge
Tom Ridge

In office
January 24, 2003 – February 1, 2005
President George W. Bush
Succeeded by Michael Chertoff

In office
January 17, 1995 – October 5, 2001
Lieutenant(s) Mark S. Schweiker
Preceded by Robert P. Casey
Succeeded by Mark S. Schweiker

Born August 26, 1945 (1945-08-26) (age 61)
Munhall, Pennsylvania, USA
Political party Republican
Religion Catholic

Thomas Joseph Ridge (born August 27, 1945 near Pittsburgh, USA) is an American politician who served as a member of the United States House of Representatives (1983–1995), Governor of Pennsylvania (1995–2001), Assistant to the President for Homeland Security (2001–2003), and the first United States Secretary of Homeland Security (2003–2005). Image File history File links Download high-resolution version (2008x3000, 474 KB) Summary Licensing File links The following pages on the English Wikipedia link to this file (pages on other projects are not listed): Tom Ridge ... The United States Secretary of Homeland Security is the head of the United States Department of Homeland Security, the body concerned with protecting the American homeland and the safety of American citizens. ... January 24 is the 24th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... 2003 (MMIII) was a common year starting on Wednesday of the Gregorian calendar. ... February 1 is the 32nd day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2005 (MMV) was a common year starting on Saturday (link displays full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... George Walker Bush (born July 6, 1946) is the 43rd and current President of the United States, inaugurated on January 20, 2001. ... Michael Chertoff (born November 28, 1953) is the current United States Secretary of Homeland Security. ... List of Pennsylvania Governors The office of Pennsylvania governor was created by the states Constitution of 1790. ... January 17 is the 17th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1995 (MCMXCV) was a common year starting on Sunday (link will display full 1995 Gregorian calendar). ... is the 278th day of the year (279th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2001 (MMI) was a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar. ... Mark Steven Schweiker (born January 31, 1953) was the governor of the U.S. state of Pennsylvania from 2001 to 2003. ... Robert Patrick Casey, Sr. ... Mark Steven Schweiker (born January 31, 1953) was the governor of the U.S. state of Pennsylvania from 2001 to 2003. ... August 26 is the 238th day of the year (239th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1945and died 2007 (MCMXLV) was a common year starting on Monday (link will display the full calendar). ... Munhall is a borough located in Allegheny County, Pennsylvania. ... The Republican Party is one of two major contemporary political parties in the United States of America, along with the Democratic Party. ... August 27 is the 239th day of the year (240th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1945and died 2007 (MCMXLV) was a common year starting on Monday (link will display the full calendar). ... Nickname: Motto: Benigno Numine (With the Benevolent Deity) Location in Allegheny County, Pennsylvania Coordinates: Country United States Commonwealth Pennsylvania County Allegheny Founded November 25, 1758 Incorporated April 22, 1794 (borough)   March 18, 1816 (city) Government  - Mayor Luke Ravenstahl (D) Area  - City 151. ... The United States House of Representatives (or simply the House) is one of the two chambers of the United States Congress; the other is the Senate. ... List of Pennsylvania Governors The office of Pennsylvania governor was created by the states Constitution of 1790. ... The presidential seal is a well-known symbol of the presidency. ... For the NBC TV Movie starring Tom Skeritt, see Homeland Security (film). ... The United States Secretary of Homeland Security is the head of the United States Department of Homeland Security, the body concerned with protecting the American homeland and the safety of American citizens. ...

Contents

Early life

Born in Munhall, Pennsylvania, in Pittsburgh, USA's Steel Valley, the son of a traveling salesman and Navy veteran, he was the oldest of three children. His mother's family of Rusyn nationality came from Slovakia, his father's ancestors were Irish and Cherokee. Ridge was raised in veterans' public housing in Erie, Pennsylvania. He was educated at St. Andrews Elementary School and Cathedral Preparatory School and did well both academically and in sports. He earned a scholarship to Harvard College, paying his way through with construction work and graduating with honors in 1967. Munhall is a borough located in Allegheny County, Pennsylvania. ... Capital Harrisburg Largest city Philadelphia Area  Ranked 33rd  - Total 46,055 sq mi (119,283 km²)  - Width 280 miles (455 km)  - Length 160 miles (255 km)  - % water 2. ... Nickname: Motto: Benigno Numine (With the Benevolent Deity) Location in Allegheny County, Pennsylvania Coordinates: Country United States Commonwealth Pennsylvania County Allegheny Founded November 25, 1758 Incorporated April 22, 1794 (borough)   March 18, 1816 (city) Government  - Mayor Luke Ravenstahl (D) Area  - City 151. ... Rusyns, also called Ruthenians, Ruthenes, Rusins, Carpatho-Rusins, and Russniaks, are a modern group of ethnic groups that speak the Rusyn language and are descended from the minority of Ruthenians who did not adopt a Ukrainian national identity and become Ukrainians in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. ... For other uses, see Cherokee (disambiguation). ... Nickname: Location in Erie County Location in the state of Pennsylvania Coordinates: County Erie County Founded 1795 Government  - Mayor Joseph Sinnott Area  - City  28. ... Cathedral Prep Crest Cathedral Preparatory School, is a male-only Roman Catholic high school in Erie, Pennsylvania, USA. Prep, as many call it, was established in 1921 by then Erie Catholic Bishop John Mark Gannon. ... Harvard Yard Harvard College is the undergraduate section and oldest school of Harvard University, founded in 1636. ...


After his first year at the Dickinson School of Law, he was drafted into the U.S. Army, where he served as an infantry staff sergeant during the Vietnam War. He earned the Bronze Star Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Vietnam Service Medal, Vietnam Campaign Medal, Vietnam Gallantry Cross Unit Citation with Palm, and the Combat Infantryman Badge. Later he was offered a position as an officer but turned it down when he learned that it would require an extra year of service. The Dickinson School of Law is located in Carlisle, Pennsylvania, and is the law school of The Pennsylvania State University. ... The Army is the branch of the United States armed forces which has primary responsibility for land-based military operations. ... United States Military Staff Sergeant insignia (U.S. Air Force) Staff Sergeant is the fifth enlisted rank in the U.S. Air Force, just above Senior Airman and below Technical Sergeant. ... Combatants Republic of Vietnam United States Republic of Korea Thailand Australia New Zealand The Philippines National Front for the Liberation of South Vietnam Democratic Republic of Vietnam People’s Republic of China Democratic Peoples Republic of Korea Strength US 1,000,000 South Korea 300,000 Australia 48,000... The Bronze Star Medal is a United States Armed Forces individual military decoration and is the fourth highest award for bravery, heroism or meritorious service. ... Ribbon for the National Defense Service Medal The National Defense Service Medal is a military decoration of the United States military originally commissioned by President Dwight D. Eisenhower. ... Vietnam Service Medal Vietnam Service Medal ribbon The Vietnam Service Medal is a military award which was created in 1965 by order of President Lyndon B. Johnson. ... The Vietnam Campaign Medal is a military award of South Vietnam which was established in 1966. ... Gallantry Cross Medal and Unit Citation The Vietnam Gallantry Cross is a military decoration of South Vietnam which was established in August 1950. ... The Combat Infantryman Badge (CIB) is an award of the United States Army which is presented to those officers, warrant officers and enlisted soldiers, in the grade of Colonel and below, who participate in active ground combat while assigned as a member of an infantry or special forces unit, brigade... In military organizations, a commissioned officer is a member of the service who derives authority directly from a sovereign power, and as such holds a commission from that power. ...


A ruptured appendix cut short his tour and he returned home in 1970; service also aggravated a childhood ear infection. Since then Ridge has had a hearing aid in his left ear. Deafness forces him to lean in close and listen intently to whoever is speaking to him.


After returning to Pennsylvania, he completed his Juris Doctor (J.D.) degree at the Dickinson School of Law, graduating in 1972, and entered private practice. Capital Harrisburg Largest city Philadelphia Area  Ranked 33rd  - Total 46,055 sq mi (119,283 km²)  - Width 280 miles (455 km)  - Length 160 miles (255 km)  - % water 2. ... Doctor of Law, Doctor of Jurisprudence, or Juris Doctor (abbreviated J.D. or JD, from the Latin, Teacher of Law) is a professional degree in law offered by universities in a number of countries. ... The Dickinson School of Law is located in Carlisle, Pennsylvania, and is the law school of The Pennsylvania State University. ...


Public service in Pennsylvania

He became Assistant District Attorney in Erie County, Pennsylvania in 1980 and prosecuted 86 cases in two years. In 1982 he successfully ran for a Pennsylvania House seat, and was re-elected six times. Ridge was notable as the first enlisted Vietnam combat veteran elected to the U.S. House. As of 2006, Ridge has never lost an election for public office. Erie County is a county located in the U.S. state of Pennsylvania. ... The United States House of Representatives (or simply the House) is one of the two chambers of the United States Congress; the other is the Senate. ... 2006 is a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ...


In 1994, Ridge ran for governor of Pennsylvania, winning the election as a Republican. He was reelected in 1998 with 57 percent of the vote in a four-way race. Ridge's share of the vote was the highest for a Republican governor in Pennsylvania (where Democrats outnumber Republicans by almost 500,000) in more than half a century. [1]. Ridge served as Governor until his resignation to become the Director of Homeland Security in 2001. The Republican Party is one of two major contemporary political parties in the United States of America, along with the Democratic Party. ...


As governor, he promoted "law and order" policies, supporting a three-strikes law and a faster death penalty process. He signed more than two hundred execution warrants, five times the number signed over a 25-year period by the two previous governors. On social issues, he opposed gay marriage, and, despite of being a Roman Catholic, supported abortion rights. His "law and order" stance did not spill over into his cabinet choices, however. The Governor nominated Dr. Peter J. Jannetta to be his secretary of health. Dr. Jannetta was known to the governor to have testified perjuriously in Court, the Pennsylvania Superior Court stating, "We have little difficulty in concluding that Dr. Jannetta's testimony at deposition was different than, or inconsistent with, the testimony at trial." Levy v Jannetta, CCP Allegheny County, GD 81-7689; appeal -J. A370017/92 Levy v Jannetta et al, No. 00150 Pittsburgh, 1992. settled, 1995." Dr. Jannetta served as Governor Ridge's health secretary for 6 months. In politics, law and order refers to a political platform which supports a strict criminal justice system, especially in relation to violent crime and property crimes, through harsher criminal penalties. ... Three strikes laws are a category of statutes enacted by state governments in the United States, beginning in the 1990s, to mandate long periods of imprisonment for persons convicted of a felony on three (or more) separate occasions. ... Capital punishment, or the death penalty, is the execution of a convicted criminal by the state as punishment for crimes known as capital crimes or capital offences. ... Same-sex marriage is marriage between individuals who are of the same legal or biological sex. ... The Roman Catholic Church, most often spoken of simply as the Catholic Church, is the largest Christian church, with over one billion members. ...


Over Ridge's tenure, the Commonwealth's budget grew by two to three percent per fiscal year and combined tax reductions totaled over $2 billion. Ridge created and grew a "Rainy Day" Fund balance to over $1 billion to be utilized during an economic downturn or recession.


Ridge pushed for legislation permitting competition among electric utilities and enhanced federal and state support for the Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP). He also separated the Commonwealth's environmental regulatory and conservation programs into two new agencies; the Department of Environmental Protection and the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources.


Ridge proposed the creation of public charter schools in Pennsylvania and in establishing alternate schools for disruptive students. He launched new academic standards that established academic expectations for what students were expected to know in different grades. Ridge also proposed a school choice demonstration program. In the United States, a charter school is a school that is created via a legal charter. ...


Ridge oversaw a number of e-government projects including renewing drivers' licenses and vehicle registrations to viewing historical documents and library catalogs. The Commonwealth's portal won several national awards. One of the nation's first electronic grant systems was put into place at the Pennsylvania Department of Education. Ridge also created the Link-to-Learn initiative to increase the effective use of technology in public schools and universities.


2000 U.S. Presidential Election

Ridge served as a close advisor to GOP presidential nominee George W. Bush, a close friend from their simultaneous tenures as governors, during the 2000 presidential campaign. In return, Bush named Ridge to his short list for possible running mates, along with New York Governor George Pataki, Michigan Governor John Engler, former Senator John Danforth, and former American Red Cross President Elizabeth Dole. [2] George Walker Bush (born July 6, 1946) is the 43rd and current President of the United States, inaugurated on January 20, 2001. ... George Elmer Pataki (born June 24, 1945) is the current Governor of New York State, USA serving since January 1995, and as of late 2006 is the longest-serving of all current U.S. governors. ... John Mathias Engler (born October 12, 1948) is an American politician. ... John Danforth John Claggett Danforth (born September 5, 1936), also referred to as Jack Danforth, is a former United States Ambassador to the United Nations and former Republican United States Senator from Missouri. ... A WWII-era poster encouraged American women to volunteer for the Red Cross as part of the war effort. ... Elizabeth Hanford Liddy Dole (born July 29, 1936) is an American politician who served in both the Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush presidential administrations, and currently serves as a United States senator representing the state of North Carolina. ...


However, Bush selected the man who was in charge of leading his search for the vice presidential nominee, former Secretary of Defense Dick Cheney, to be his running mate. Richard Bruce Dick Cheney (born January 30, 1941), is the 46th and current Vice President of the United States, serving under President George W. Bush. ...


Ridge was also reportedly Colin Powell's choice to be Secretary of Defense in Bush's new cabinet. With his reputation as a former Congressman and a strong administrator as governor, in addition to his friendship with Bush and Powell, he was seen as a frontrunner for the post. But after much decrying by conservatives over his lack of defense experience, particularly by Republican primary candidate Gary Bauer, who decried Ridge as a "peacenik-type of congressman during the Reagan years" and Robert Novak who wrote of Ridge's lack of defense experience and his opposition to the Strategic Defense Initiative. There was also rumored to be a lot of animosity regarding the nomination between Powell and Dick Cheney regarding Ridge. With all of this Ridge promptly took his name out of the running and Donald Rumsfeld was eventually named as defense secretary. General Colin Luther Powell, United States Army (Ret. ... The United States Secretary of Defense is the head of the United States Department of Defense, concerned with the armed services and The Secretary is a member of the Presidents Cabinet. ... This article needs additional references or sources to facilitate its verification. ... Robert David Sanders Novak (born February 26, 1931) is a conservative American political commentator and political figure. ... The Strategic Defense Initiative (SDI) was proposed by U.S. President Ronald Reagan on March 23, 1983[1] to use ground-based and space-based systems to protect the United States from attack by strategic nuclear ballistic missiles. ... Donald Henry Rumsfeld (born July 9, 1932) is a U.S. politician and businessman, who was the 13th Secretary of Defense under President Gerald Ford from 1975–1977, and the 21st Secretary of Defense under President George W. Bush from 2001–2006. ...


Homeland Security Advisor and Secretary

Following the September 11, 2001 Terrorist Attacks, U.S. President George W. Bush created the Office of Homeland Security within the White House, and named Ridge to head it. The charge to the nation's new director of homeland security was to develop and coordinate a comprehensive national strategy to strengthen the United States against terrorist threats or attacks. In the words of President George W. Bush, he had the strength, experience, personal commitment and authority to accomplish this critical mission. Ridge formally resigned as Pennsylvania's governor on October 5, 2001. A sequential look at United Flight 175 crashing into the south tower of the World Trade Center The September 11, 2001 attacks (often referred to as 9/11—pronounced nine eleven or nine one one) consisted of a series of coordinated terrorist[1] suicide attacks upon the United States, predominantly... George Walker Bush (born July 6, 1946) is the 43rd and current President of the United States, inaugurated on January 20, 2001. ... On October 8, 2001, in response to the September 11, 2001 attacks, President George W. Bush announced the establishment of an executive-level Office of Homeland Security to coordinate homeland security efforts, to be headed by Governor Tom Ridge with the title of Assistant to the President for Homeland Security. ... is the 278th day of the year (279th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2001 (MMI) was a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar. ...


In January 2003 and after the passage of the Homeland Security Act of 2002, the Office of Homeland Security split into a Cabinet-level Department, the Department of Homeland Security, and the White House Homeland Security Advisory Council. Ridge left the White House and became the first Secretary of Homeland Security. The Department's Mission "is to (A) prevent terrorist attacks within the United States; (B) reduce the vulnerability of the United States to terrorism; and (C) minimize the damage, and assist in the recovery, from terrorist attacks that do occur within the United States" (From H.R. 5005-8 the Homeland Security Act of 2002). The newly created Department was the most comprehensive reorganization of the Federal government since the National Security Act of 1947. The Department of Homeland Security consolidates 22 agencies and 180,000 employees, unifying once-fragmented Federal functions in a single agency dedicated to protecting America from terrorism. Ridge worked with the employees from combined agencies to strengthen borders, provide for intelligence analysis and infrastructure protection, improve the use of science and technology to counter weapons of mass destruction, and to create a comprehensive response and recovery division. Cabinet meeting on May 16, 2001. ... The United States Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is a Cabinet department of the federal government of the United States that is concerned with protecting the American homeland and the safety of American citizens. ... The Homeland Security Advisory Council is part of the Executive Office of the President. ... The United States Secretary of Homeland Security is the head of the United States Department of Homeland Security, the body concerned with protecting the American homeland and the safety of American citizens. ... President Truman signs the National Security Act Amendment of 1949 with guests in the Oval Office. ...


He also signed Mumia Abu Jamal's death warrant twice. Mumia Abu-Jamal (born Wesley Cook April 24, 1954) is a journalist and political activist. ...


On November 30, 2004, he submitted his resignation to the President, saying, "After more than 22 consecutive years of public service, it is time to give personal and family matters a higher priority." [3] November 30 is the 334th day of the year (335th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... shelby was here 2004 (MMIV) was a leap year starting on Thursday of the Gregorian calendar. ...


Work in the private sector

In February 2005, Tom Ridge was named to the board of Home Depot. Based on an article from the Atlanta Business Chronicle, Ridge's compensation was expected to be in the area of $100,000 per annum for this position. Since April 2005, Tom Ridge has also served on the board of Savi Technology, the primary technology provider for the wireless cargo-monitoring network for the United States Department of Defense.[citation needed] The Home Depot (NYSE: HD) is an American retailer of home improvement and construction products. ... Savi Technology is a logistics company which designs and implements product-tracking and asset management systems, using RFID, barcode, cellular and satellite communications. ...


On September 4, 2006, Tom Ridge was nominated Senior Adviser to the Government of Albania, by Albanian Prime Minister Sali Berisha. is the 247th day of the year (248th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... For the Manfred Mann album, see 2006 (album). ...   (born October 15, 1944) is the Prime Minister of the Republic of Albania. ...


Recently, Tom Ridge was selected to serve on the Virginia Tech Incident Review Panel prescribed by Virginia Governor Tim Kaine.[citation needed]


Recognition

205. ... Nickname: Location in Erie County Location in the state of Pennsylvania Coordinates: County Erie County Founded 1795 Government  - Mayor Joseph Sinnott Area  - City  28. ... The Tom Ridge Environmental Center is a Pennsylvania State Park. ... Aerial view from the northeast, showing Gull Point in the foreground Aerial view of Presque Isle State Park. ...

Personal life

Tom's wife, Michele Ridge, is the former executive director of the Erie County Library System. They have been married since 1979, and have two adopted children; Lesley (age 21) and Tommy (age 19). Erie County is a county located in the U.S. state of Pennsylvania. ...

Robert Budd Dwyer (November 21, 1939 — January 22, 1987) was a former Pennsylvania politician who, on the morning of January 22, 1987, committed suicide by shooting himself in the mouth with a handgun during a televised press conference. ...

External links

Wikimedia Commons has media related to:
Tom Ridge

Image File history File links Commons-logo. ... The Wikimedia Commons (also called Wikicommons) is a repository of free content images, sound and other multimedia files. ...

Official links

The Biographical Directory of the United States Congress is a biographical dictionary of all members of both houses of the United States Congress, past and present. ...

News links

Preceded by
Donald A. Bailey
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Pennsylvania's 21st congressional district

19831995
Succeeded by
Phil English
Preceded by
Robert P. Casey
Governor of Pennsylvania
January 17, 1995 - October 5, 2001
Succeeded by
Mark S. Schweiker
Preceded by
newly created
United States Secretary of Homeland Security
2003-2005
Succeeded by
Michael Chertoff
Persondata
NAME Ridge, Tom
ALTERNATIVE NAMES Ridge, Thomas Joseph
SHORT DESCRIPTION 1st Secretary of Homeland Security of the United States
DATE OF BIRTH August 27, 1945
PLACE OF BIRTH Munhall, Pennsylvania, United States
DATE OF DEATH
PLACE OF DEATH

  Results from FactBites:
 
Biography of Governor Tom Ridge (406 words)
On October 8, 2001, Tom Ridge was sworn in as the first Office of Homeland Security Advisor in the history of the United States of America.
Ridge was twice elected Governor of Pennsylvania, serving from 1995 to 2001.
Governor Ridge and his wife, Michele, the former executive director of the Erie County Library system, have two children, Lesley and Tommy.
Tom Ridge - MSN Encarta (478 words)
Tom Ridge, born in 1945, governor of Pennsylvania from 1995 to 2001 when he was chosen by President George W. Bush to head what became the Department of Homeland Security (DHS).
Ridge became governor of Pennsylvania in 1995 and was reelected in 1998.
As secretary, Ridge oversaw the department’s mandate to prevent terrorist attacks in the United States, reduce the country’s vulnerability to terrorism, and plan responses and recovery in the case of an attack.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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